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A brief-ish observation on the latest Republican atrocities

I am not hugely surprised by them for two reasons, one of my own and one semi-touted elsewhere.

Firstly, as with many militant groups, the IRA and its alphabet soup offshoots have a certain life cycle for its recruits - recruitment when young, graduation to active 'service' , promotion to management / politics and finally retirement. Always supposing that they are not killed by their own bombs. Something like half of all Republican fatalities during the '68-'98 phase blew themselves up. Yes, really. Anyway, there will have been plenty of youngish Republicans ready to go active when Sinn Fein / IRA decided enough was enough. That the leadership of same was no longer in the first flush of youth was a major factor in their seeking retirement / 'respectability', so to speak. While the INLA - a hard left Republican group - was effectively scared off post Good Friday, doubtless the class of '98 has been seething since then, as have numerous younger supporters.

Which brings me to my second point. The riots and attempted re-runs of May '68 elsewhere have acted as a spur and the 'protest' tradition of Irish Republican youth follows a rather different trajectory to stone throwing Greeks etc. CIRA, RIRA etc are more likely to be marrying insurrectionary left attitudes with Irish nationalism than were the provos.

And ergo, that's why it has happened now.

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